M*A*S*H

Season 11 Episode 4

The Joker is Wild

2
Aired Unknown Nov 15, 1982 on CBS
8.7
out of 10
User Rating
52 votes
2

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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The Joker is Wild
AIRED:
Tired of reminders about Trapper John's skill as a practical joker, B.J. bets Hawkeye he can prank everyone present.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • I hate the phrase 'M*A*S*H' was showing its age' but this episode sadly embodies that idea.

    2.5
    Slamming on a M*A*S*H* episode is painful for me, and I usually find something to like in every episode, era and season aside. But for me, so many problems exist in 'The Joker Is Wild' precisely because I am a longtime fan.



    First of all, didn't BJ establish his master manipulator prankster status when he left Hawkeye holding the bag when they pantsed Charles? Second, to what history are they referring that so annoys BJ? Trapper was never a solo prankster, and even with Hawkeye, his best stuff also went when working with Radar. Next, the whole notion to beat was that Trapper did it alone, yet BJ's topper stunt involved having everyone in on it. Let's not forget Potter, who allowed his Chief Surgeon to be pushed to exhaustion when wounded could come in at any time. Wasn't Hawkeye's unreadiness when Radar got wounded a huge problem? Add to that leaving said Chief Surgeon out in the open when shelling and sniper fire was a reality at the 4077th, even in the best of times. Finally, the supposed super prankster is aided by the pure dumb luck of his old friend's visit. All for a 'prank that never came'?



    BJ's moustache eventually grew back, but this episode has never grown on me.moreless
  • B.J., sick of Hawkeye reminiscing about Trapper\'s practical jokes, sets up a contest. B.J. bets he can pull a joke on everybody (the regular crew). Hawkeye is determined not to let B.J. get him, but his own determination is driving him insane.moreless

    9.2
    This is an episode for laughs. While the overall plot has some flaws, the story delivers a few unexpected chuckles. One thing I like about M*A*S*H* is that it never forgot the older characters: Henry, Trapper, Frank, Radar, etc. Everyone shares their fond memories of Trapper’s jokes. However, no one is hesitant to move ahead with something new- this time at Hawkeye’s expense. As the prank targets are eliminated one by one, and the complexity of the “pranks” escalates, Hawkeye’s paranoia is on the rise. It is amusing to see him on the other side of the pranks for once.

    moreless
Alan Alda

Alan Alda

Captain Benjamin Franklin "Hawkeye" Pierce

David Ogden Stiers

David Ogden Stiers

Major Charles Emerson Winchester III (Season 6-11)

Harry Morgan

Harry Morgan

Colonel Sherman T. Potter (Season 4-11)

Jamie Farr

Jamie Farr

Corporal/Sergeant Maxwell Q. Klinger

Loretta Swit

Loretta Swit

Major Margaret J. "Hot Lips" Houlihan

Mike Farrell

Mike Farrell

Captain BJ Hunnicut (Season 4-11)

David Haid

David Haid

Pt. Leightman

Guest Star

Jin-Taek Yi

Jin-Taek Yi

Korean Soldier

Guest Star

Terry Moyer

Terry Moyer

Nurse

Guest Star

Jeff Maxwell

Jeff Maxwell

Igor

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (2)

    • No one takes note of this little fact, although Hawkeye most certainly should have done so: the accepted wager was that B.J. would pull a joke on each and every one of the main characters within 24 hours. By his own admission, B.J. did not do so. The fact that B.J. arbitrarily altered the wager makes no difference, as he did not inform Hawkeye of the change. B.J. should have been the one up on that table.

    • Near the beginning of the episode, as Hawkeye and BJ walk out the swamp, there is what appears to be a large grey wall that rises up beyond the limits of the shot in the background. Is this meant to be a cliff maybe? Something to show that the camp actually does move around, though it's not often mentioned.

  • QUOTES (3)

    • Charles: Hunnicutt, if there is a God, there will come a time in your life when you are in dire straits and in desperate need of a wealthy, influential friend. When that time comes, I pray that you will turn to me so that I can laugh in your face.

    • Margaret: (showing her robe was cut at her rear-end) I rushed back to my tent, but not before hearing a chorus of whistles, cat calls, and one marriage proposal!

    • B.J.: You see, the greatest joke of all was the one that never came.

  • NOTES (3)

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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